Now, we have talked quite a bit about the bed bug but what you want and need to know is what to do if you have discovered that you have bed bugs in your home.
We spent that time talking about it so that you would fully understand what these creatures do, how they live and how they affect you. Knowledge is power and in this case, it can help you to get rid of bed bugs once and for all.
Get Rid of Bed Bugs:
We will provide you with a step by step approach to methods that can help you to get rid of bed bugs once and for all.
If one method does not work, move on to the next one. The goal here is to determine what the best method for your infestation is.
Step One: Identification
The first and most important step in treating bed bugs is to determine that the bed bug is actually a bed bug. As we mentioned, bed bugs are commonly mistaken for other creatures.
The problem here is if you treat them as you would other creatures you will have no success with treatment.
Likewise, if you treat another animal with the treatments recommended for bed bugs, you are likely to have few results as well. A flea will not respond to the treatment of a bed bug. And a bed bug will not respond to the treatment of a flea.
Step Two: Determine Method Of Treatment
The next thing that you need to do is to consider if you plan to treat the bed bugs yourself or if you plan to call in a professional to handle the situation.
If you have a serious infestation of bed bugs, it is likely that you do need to use a professional to handle the infestation if you will have any chance of getting rid of them in the long term.
“Let’s take a look at the options when it comes to each of these treatments.”
Do it Yourself Treatments:
You do have some options here. One method that can be effective is to use a mixture of pyrethrums and fresh water diatomaceous earth. These products will work to provide you with a natural solution to getting rid of bed bugs.
It will cause damage to the nervous system of the bed bugs in the form of a mechanical action. Then, the bed bug will die.
It is essential for you to not use these types of products that are salt water diatomaceous earth as this can be quite dangerous. In fact, any animal that inhales it, pets and humans alike, can have lung damage.
In addition to this, this product has been found to cause cancer in mammals of all types.
If you plan to use this type of product, there are some manufacturers that do provide an insecticide mixture like this for you to use. If you purchase it, you will want to insure it is used with the utmost respect for the directions provided with it.
Another option for the self treatment of bed bugs is to use fruit and vegetable insecticides. These will do the same as above but will also provide the necessary safety to other animals including humans.
“These products are made of canola oil and pyrethins.”
A Mistaken Self Treatment Approach:
One treatment of bed bugs that you may have heard about is using extreme levels of heat and cold to kill them. As you have learned, bed bugs do prefer a specific heat range. They like the temperature to be above 65 degrees but below 86 degrees as well.
Yet, there is scientific proof that disproves the theory that bed bugs will in fact be killed by these extremes of temperature. The main problem is that there is not enough time to keep them in this state.
The product needs to remain very cold or very hot for a long period of time. This is just too hard to do, in most cases.
On top of this, there is no real way to do this to treat mattresses or other large bedding items. Therefore it is recommended that this method of removing bed bugs not be used.
Those that have bed bugs may not even want to do anything but call on a professional to come out and help them to get rid of the pests.
When you call on an exterminator to handle your bed bug problem, it is very important that you take the time necessary to seek out one that truly knows what he is doing.
You need to insure that he knows how to handle and has been effective at the treatment of bed bugs, not just any type of insect. They require special treatment options.
You may find that there is a problem with doing this. If you live in North America, the near extinction of bed bugs in this area has caused there to be very few people available that do know how to treat this condition.
As bed bugs begin to re-infest this area, though, it is a sure thing that there will likely be additional individuals to call on.
Another problem that may arise when calling a professional to handle the bed bug problems you are having is the fact that many of the techniques used to treat bed bugs when they
were everywhere before the 1940’s are no longer allowed to be used.
For example, Cyan gas was used to fumigate areas that had infestations. It was quite a powerful insecticide and it did work to destroy them. But, the risks that it presented to pets and the human population (not to mention the environment) have caused this substance to be no longer in use.
Fumigation may be the only way to go, but it is also costly and may be banned in some areas. You will need to insure that the exterminator that handles bed bugs in your area is well aware of these problems.
Finding a skilled, experienced bed bug exterminator is an essential part to getting rid of the bed bugs. Now, we will say that you do decide to call on a professional to handle your extermination. This is recommended as it is the most effective.
“But, don’t worry, there is more that you can do to handle this situation.”
Step Three: Treatment Needs
You should know from the start that bed bugs are not usually going to be gone in the blink of an eye. In fact, they can take several treatments in order to be effective. Often times, it is necessary that there are three or more treatments necessary.
The more invasive the infestation is, the more necessary it will be for them to do more treatments. The size of your home or location to be exterminated also should be taken into consideration here.
Things like having a skilled exterminator and having an extensive treatment procedure done can help you to get the
most out of the treatments.
Additionally, it is also beneficial if you have an exterminator that will remove nesting areas from the home and help you to determine where the infestation came from.
When all of these factors are taken into consideration, the bed bug infestation can be treated faster.
You should take the time to determine the extent of what the exterminator will provide for you, in writing before you move forward with their service.
Step Four: Pre Treating Your Home
Once you have an exterminator in place, he should help you to follow the needs provided here. But, you will need to handle the preparations for the extermination yourself.
If this is not done right, the whole chemical treatment that you get will be compromised.
So, let’s take a look at what you can do to protect your home and prepare it for extermination of the bed bugs.
- Packing up the home. The first thing that you need to do is to pack up the home. This will include moving your furniture away from the baseboards and walls. You will then need to open up anything that is potentially a hiding place for the bed bugs to expose it to be sprayed.
You should empty out desks and drawers. Bookshelves should be emptied too. Anything that you pack up should be cleaned and treated for bed bugs. The last thing you need is to re-infest your home with bed bugs once you clean them out.
- Washing. The next thing that you need to do is to launder anything that can be washed. This is no easy task of course. You will want to make sure that the laundering will include things like your clothing, your rugs and even any stuffed animals that you have. To make this effective, wash and immediately place all items into a plastic bag and seal them. They should be removed from the house until after the treatment has been done.
If you will be using a dry cleaner, tell them of the situation and provide all laundry in sealed bags to them.
The most important part of the laundering of these products is that you allow them to dry in the drier for at least 20 to 30 minutes on high to medium heat. This should kill all bed bugs at all stages of their life cycle.
You do not even have to wash the clothing, although most will want to just to feel better about wearing them again.
- Vacuuming Them Up. This too is an important step in getting rid of bed bugs. Here, you need a high powered vacuum and you need to do a very detailed job of cleaning.
It will help to lower the number of bed bugs from the home, making the chemical treatment that much better for you.
You should use attachments to get into the crevices, the walls, the baseboards and virtually any place that the bed bugs are lurking. You can also use this on your mattress and bed frame as well.
Get behind pictures, under furniture and throughout the furniture to get up as much as you can. Remember all the places we said they liked to hide?
Finally, make sure that you take the filter and vacuum outdoors and empty it right into the trash. You do not want to give them any chance to escape on you.
- Steaming. Steaming can be done, but it will not necessarily work magic on your furniture, your mattresses or your bedding. Sometimes it can work
well, especially if you do not want these items to be treated chemically, but in the long term, it is more effective to allow chemical treatment if the product will handle it.
- The Bed. One of the biggest decisions that you will need to make is what to do with the bed. If your bed has been infested, especially if it is a heavy infestation, you may want to consider getting rid of it. But, it can be treated, in most cases.
In most cases, local treatments using insecticide products will be effective. If the box spring is compromised, though, this can be hard to treat as there are many places for them to hide.
The decision is yours. If you feel that you will feel better about it and can afford to, dispose of your mattress.
Insure that you mark the mattress with its condition and do not allow mattress deliveries to pick up the old one as this can contaminate others.
Place them inside of plastic and mark them before transporting them to keep from spreading the bed bugs around.
Finally, you will want to wait on having new mattresses delivered to your home until after the chemicaltreatment is completed.
Step Five: Treatment At Last
When the exterminator does come to your home, he will take the time necessary to go through the entire thing and treat it. At least, he should do this. He will use two types of products.
One is called an instant kill. This pesticide will kill the
bed bugs as he finds them. He may also use this product in large hiding spots that he finds.
The second product that the exterminator will use is that of a barrier. When the product is placed around the home, in and near hiding places, the bed bugs will cross over the barrier and die because of it.
This product can last up to 60 days although it is most effective the first two weeks.
It is important for the professional to do a thorough job in the home. This is what will determine how effective the treatment is.
After the treatment is done, you may still notice one or two bed bugs around. This is common and as long as their numbers are low, you can assume that the treatment is working. It can take up to two weeks to fully kill off the bed bugs.
During this time, monitor them. If you notice additional bed bugs, you can have an additional treatment done.
You should not vacuum the area in which the treatment, especially in the bedroom, has been done. This can remove the barrier too soon. Your professional will give you a proper timeline here.
Lastly, it is important to note that sometimes we may feel that we see, fell and notice bed bugs when they are not around. As we mentioned before, bed bugs can cause us to be delusional. Some even feel as if the bugs are following them from place to place.
With proper treatment of the home, you can safely remove bed bugs from the home altogether.